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Research and development

Coming early in 2015 - new research information areas for:

  • Service users, carers and the public
  • Researchers
  • Industry
  • Research compliance 

What does NSFT Research do?
We provide support to mental health clinicians, academics, industry, service users and carers in the following areas:

  • Developing research
  • Approving research
  • Conducting research
  • Publishing research
  • Research training

I am a service user or a carer, how can I become involved in mental health research?
There are many opportunities for you to become involved in research:

  • As a participant: We run research studies across many mental health conditions and we are always looking for new participants to become involved. If you would like more information about specific studies we are conducting, please speak to your Trust clinician in the first instance.

  • As a service user, carer or member of the public: We have launched inspire, a engagement initiative to involve service users and carers in all aspects of mental health research running across Norfolk and Suffolk. For more information about inspire, please email

    inspire consists of three service user and carer panels: Youth, Adult and Older Age which lead on the identification of research topics and questions, collaborate on the development of research proposals, offer advice about the running of research projects, and lead the publication and dissemination strategies for research.

    inspire is also supported by biannual Public Forums, which give the opportunity for the public to meet with researchers and learn about research being undertaken in the Trust. For more information, please email

I have a research idea, what do I do now?
Please email us on to find out more about how we can help you to develop your idea into a high-quality, practical research project. Our research development officer can help to identify collaborators and funding sources, and guide you through the process from your "light-bulb" moment to a final protocol, in collaboration with inspire!

How do I get my research project approved?

All research taking place in the NSFT must have a formal Research Permission before it can start. Applications for approval must be submitted to our Research Committee through NSFT Research, using the Integrated Research Application System (IRAS) form. We can also manage any contractual, financial or HR processes required before you start.

If you wish to undertake a service evaluation or a research project in the Trust, please also contact us to discuss the next steps.

Research training programme:
We run a programme of research training for all NHS staff and academics working in NHS mental health research across the region. Please contact us at for more information. Our current courses include:

  • GCP for Adults Lacking Capacity
  • Research for Beginners (half-day and full-day)
  • Research Trial Management
  • Research Approvals
  • Clinical Research for Pharmacists
  • Principal Investigator Training
  • Developing Research Workshop

We are currently developing training for service users and carers about becoming involved in research, through the inspire initiative. 

Research network partnership
We work closely with CRN Eastern within an integrated team model to deliver national clinical research across the Trust. This enables us to bring national and international research to Norfolk and Suffolk, and offer our service users and carers more opportunities to become involved in ground-breaking research in mental health conditions.

Industry research

We support the conduct of a number of industry or commercial research projects. We are happy to have a discussion about feasibility, set-up and how we can support industry to set-up mental health research across Norfolk and Suffolk.

If you are a representative from industry, please read our Commercial Study Handout v3 and contact us

R&D Operational Capability Statement (RDOCS):
At the Trust we are committed to adopting NIHR Research Support Services principles in the operation of NSFT Research. To this end, the Trust Board has approved the following R&D Operational Capability Statement v2.3

Companies and institutions can use this to find out what services we offer and the names and contact details of stakeholders in NSFT Research.

NIHR PID Reporting Data 2014
The Government wishes to see a dramatic and sustained improvement in the performance of providers of NHS services in initiating and delivering clinical trials.

In 2013 the NIHR requested that providers of NHS services publish outcomes of clinical trial research against certain benchmarks. From October 2014, the NIHR funding to providers of NHS services became conditional on reporting on and meeting the following two benchmarks:

  • Recruiting the first patient within the 70 day time period from submission of the study

  • Delivery against the recruitment target agreed for the NSFT site

The performance below reflects studies which are considered to be interventional or clinical trials only.

Performance in Initiating: Clinical Trials

Performance in Initiating.pdf

Performance in Delivering: Commercial Studies

Performance in Delivering.pdfInspire_logo_180.jpg